New Study from MFAN and TLC Finds Evaluation Quality on the Rise, But Barriers to Use Remain


December 5, 2017 (WASHINGTON) – This statement is delivered on behalf of the Modernizing Foreign Assistance Network (MFAN) by Co-Chairs George Ingram, Tessie San Martin, and Connie Veillette. Today MFAN and The Lugar Center release a new study, From Evidence to Learning: Recommendations to Improve U.S. Foreign Assistance Evaluation, examining the evaluation policies and practices of the … Continue reading New Study from MFAN and TLC Finds Evaluation Quality on the Rise, But Barriers to Use Remain

Redesigning U.S. National Security Institutions


In December 2016, we made a case in Foreign Affairs for consolidating development and humanitarian relief operations under a single U.S. Government roof.  We argued that growing instability in the developing world was complicating our capacity to manage the great power relationships with China and Russia and creating fertile ground for non-state terrorist organizations. We … Continue reading Redesigning U.S. National Security Institutions

Redesign Should Support an Independent USAID


I congratulate those who worked on the Redesign Consensus: A Plan for U.S. Assistance.  Though there will be some disagreement on the details within the development community, the document provides core concepts for the immediate and needed advocacy on Capitol Hill and with the Administration. These themes include a substantially independent USAID with authority and responsibility … Continue reading Redesign Should Support an Independent USAID

Redesign Consensus: Advancing the Conversation on Effective US Assistance


We are pleased to join 12 colleagues in signing the Redesign Consensus: A Plan for US Assistance that launched today. The four main recommendations are to empower USAID as the lead independent aid agency, to create a full-fledged development finance institution, to establish a global development and humanitarian strategy, and to upgrade systems to better manage personnel, procurement, … Continue reading Redesign Consensus: Advancing the Conversation on Effective US Assistance

Getting Comfortable with the “T-word” at USAID, a Focus on Transitioning Countries


Amidst the general approbation that accompanied Ambassador Mark Green’s arrival at USAID to serve as Administrator, there appears to be one dark cloud on the horizon. Some in the development community are deeply concerned about Administrator Green’s endorsement of “strategic transitions,” in which USAID works its way out of job and, in one form or … Continue reading Getting Comfortable with the “T-word” at USAID, a Focus on Transitioning Countries

Redesign Reactions: What’s Next for the State Department and USAID?


Since the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued a memo on government reorganization in April, MFAN has helped foster a public conversation about how a redesign can and should enhance the effectiveness, accountability, and impact of our foreign assistance. MFAN recently re-released Guiding Principles for Effective U.S. Assistance, which assert that any … Continue reading Redesign Reactions: What’s Next for the State Department and USAID?

Recent Redesign Proposals Converge on 10 Priorities for Reform


Recently a number of distinguished thinkers – including MFAN’s Co-Chairs – have published recommendations for upgrading the U.S. diplomacy and development architecture. To inform the administration and Congress as they consider redesign options, below is an analysis of these proposals that identifies ten common priorities for reform. Taken together, these ten recommendations would strengthen the … Continue reading Recent Redesign Proposals Converge on 10 Priorities for Reform

Redesign Reaction: Getting to the nitty gritty to make the most of foreign aid


This blog is part of a series responding to the MFAN Co-Chairs’ and other aid architecture proposals. Join the conversation! #RedesignReaction Based on several decades of work in the foreign assistance field, I have a lot of unanswered questions, but one thing I know for certain:  foreign aid types – proponents and opponents – just … Continue reading Redesign Reaction: Getting to the nitty gritty to make the most of foreign aid

Redesign Data: Dueling Dashboards


The potential redesign of both the State Department and USAID – and their relationship to each other in managing U.S. foreign assistance – is the topic of much discussion and ideas.  How our foreign assistance is delivered, by whom, and with what objective is all part of debate.  Some of the ideas are big, such … Continue reading Redesign Data: Dueling Dashboards

Redesign Consensus: Development Community Defends Independent Lead Aid Agency


The Trump Administration’s call for a reorganization of the federal government has many fearful that this exercise will follow in the footsteps of the steep proposed budget cuts for Fiscal Year 2018. Yet MFAN has seen this as an opportunity to provide ideas for principled and rational reform of our aid architecture.  A number of … Continue reading Redesign Consensus: Development Community Defends Independent Lead Aid Agency